Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Teaching Tip #32

Teacherscribe’s Teaching Tip #32
The Trouble with textbooks.
I’m stealing this from a book I read this summer for a graduate course on teaching reading in the content areas: Subjects Matter by Harvey “Smokey” Daniels and Steven Zemelman.
Trouble #3 – textbooks are badly designed.
How are those anchor essays coming for you English teachers?  If you don’t understand them – or even like them – what are our students going to think of them?
Not only are the assignments problematic, mostly because – in Collections – they try to cover too many concepts with one task, but the design of the textbook is a mess.  If I can’t even wade my way through the teacher edition – with its massive sections devoted to the book’s flexibility, engagement, preparation, table of contents for every section, alignment to the common core, section on how to plan, and sample close reading activities . . . it’s a damn nightmare.  And I have to teach this!  I’m on the textbook’s side and I still have this frustration.
What hope do our kids have?

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